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Open Access at Washington University

Information about open access publishing options and issues

Background: Open Science - Open Data

Here are a few links to get you started if you are interested in this.

Washington University Repositories

Some Subject Repositories

Issues to consider

  • Impact factor of the journal and other measures of importance and credibility.
  • How is peer review done?
  • How much will it cost you to publish in a particular journal? Are there subsidies or grant funds you can use for OA publishing? Subsidized Open Access Fees for WU and WUSM Authors
  • How long from submission to publication on average?

Issues: Impact

Goals for scholarly publishing may include:
- Distribution of results; reaching colleagues
- Professional goals, such as, tenure, success in external funding, etc.

You will need to determine whether Open Access (OA) publishing options exist that will help accomplish your goals.

Issues: Economics

The economics of journal publishing is changing and varies from publisher to publisher.  Most OA publishing is supported by author fees. Fees are sometimes waived or reduced depending on the circumstances of the authors. Fees range from about $3,000/article to no charge at all. Often author fees can be paid from grant funds, if you choose to spend your funding that way.

Even with very high author fees, it has been argued that the total cost for access is lower than the traditional economic publishing model.  Discussions about the economics of scholarly publishing may speculate on the ability of traditional, subscription-model journals to survive.  Since these are often the top ranked journals in a field, OA is seen as a threat to a model that has developed over centuries.

Some external funders require open access or public access of articles about research that they fund.

Example OA journals and publishing

Please let your subject librarian know if you've had good or bad experiences.